|Jones Abari, aka Gen. Akotebe Darikoro|
Credit: Punch Newspaper
One Jones Abari, aka Gen. Akotebe Darikoro, has been apprehended by the Department of State Services ( DSS) for the alleged mastermind of a hoaxed plan to overthrow President Muhammad Buhari by the military.
The DSS in a statement by its spokesperson, Mr. Tony Opuiyo, in Abuja explained that Abiri was arrested on Thursday by DSS operatives.
The arrested suspect is the leader of the Joint Revolutionary Council, an arm of the Joint Niger Delta Liberation Force, the DSS says
The statement added that the mastermind confessed to have been involved in other criminal activities like issuing a threat to launch missile attacks on selected targets in Abuja and the Presidential Villa.
The DSS said the suspect also wrote threatening letters to the management of the Nigeria Agip Oil Company and the Shell Petroleum Development Company, demanding for N500m and N250m respectively.
It added that Abiri was also accused of masterminding the vandalism of NAOC trunk line in Ogboinbiri, Southern Ijaw and the bombing of the SPDC oil pipeline.
In a related development, the DSS said it had arrested a suspected terrorist, Bulama Ramat, at the Jabi Motor Park, FCT on July 21. He said that prior to his arrest, Ramat was planning to attack the Federal Capital Territory and its environs in collaboration with other elements of an extremist cell of the Boko Haram group. Opuiyo said that the service also made other arrests within the month of July in Enugu, Ondo, Jos, Kaduna, Yenagoa, Port Harcourt and Kano states.
The service urged all citizens and residents to remain vigilant and report all suspicious persons, parcels or vehicles to the nearest security formation. “Members of the public are further called upon to see our societal and individual safety as our collective responsibility,” he said.
He advised the public to support security and law enforcement agencies with critical information that would assist in providing a safe environment for all to carry out their legitimate businesses.
“These included, vandalism of the Nigeria Agip Oil Company trunk line in Ogboinbiri, Southern Ijaw LGA and bombing of an oil pipeline belonging to Shell Development Company at Brass creek on 8 July, 2016, all in Bayelsa State.
“Darikoro is also the mastermind of the recently circulated hoax of planned overthrow of President Muhammadu Buhari, by the military.”
Meanwhile, local newspaper publishers in Bayelsa State stated that Abiri was not a militant while giving the state government and security agencies in the state a 48-hour ultimatum to produce Abiri, who is the publisher of Weekly Source Newspaper.
The publishers, under the auspices of Bayelsa Federated Newspapers Publishers Association, said since Abiri’s abduction by nine persons, who claimed to be security operatives on Thursday in Yenagoa, nothing had been heard of the publisher.
Chairman of the association, Mr. EasterDay Ayibatari, said the ultimatum was to enable the government and the security operatives tell them where Abiri was being kept.
Ayibatiri said, “This is because the people who ‘abducted’ the man said they were from the Department of State Services. Thus, it behoves the security agency to identify and locate where the man is being detained. Let me also make it clear that the man was on medications; he was not feeling well.”
Ayibatari, who lamented that journalists in the state were no longer safe, said armed security operatives stormed Abiri’s office in three cars with number plates: SAG 391AA, PBT 480 AA and Lagos 193 DN.
It will be recalled that last month, the Nigerian Army denied the allegation that there was a plot by the service to overthrow President Mohammadu Buhari.
The acting Director, Army Public Relations, Col. Sani Usman, had said in a statement that the Army was investigating the claim.
He said that the Nigerian Army was a professional organisation which was a product of democratic governance and would not be associated with the grave issue of truncating democratic governance.
He described the allegation as a declaration of war against the current administration by the peddlers of the claim.
The DSS also said its officers apprehended one Saidu Yahaya on Friday, during the screening of prospective Hajj pilgrims at the Muslim Pilgrims Board in Jos, Plateau State.
It added, “Yahaya has been under the radar of the service as a gunrunner who has been supplying arms to criminals, ethnic and religious bigots in Plateau, Taraba, Benue and Nasarawa states.
“Similarly, on July 21, one Stephen Mamayebo, also known as Oscar, a suspected militant was arrested at OMPADEC Primary School in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.”
The DSS explained that Mamayebo was arrested in connection with the kidnap of an expatriate staff of Setraco Construction Company and murder of two soldiers along Ogbia-Nembe road in April and subsequent murder of two soldiers.
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